storms approached. homes, businesses and churches were damaged and residents ran for cover as it touched down. >> we stepped out and you could see it swirling, doing its thing and then it came behind the church. >> i prayed to god as loud as i could and i was just praying for my safety, and i knew the church was shaking. i just prayed that the church stayed put, and god would protect me and the ones. >>reporter: tornado warnings burglaried as severe weather moved through -- blaired as severe weather moved through the city. many grabbed cameras to catch what appeared to be funnel clouds forming. >> we gotta hurry and get past this. >>reporter: alabama power officials say the winds knocked out electricity to more than 20,000 people across the state. damage was widespread. there were more than 30 reports of tornadoes from texas to alabama. the day got off to a rough start in oklahoma. more than 20 vehicles were involved in an early morning accident that shut down
interstate 40 just outside oklahoma city. officials say at least 10 people were taken to hospitals. texas got a double dose of bad weather a.25-year-old man was killed near houston after a tree fell on his pickup. snow covered the ground in longview and turned dallas into a winter wonderland. and blizzard blizzard warnings stretched from arkansas to pennsylvania. i'm ed payne reporting. news time right now 6:31. the people of newtown, connecticut observed christmas with heavy hearts. it's been less than two weeks since the shooting at sandy hook elementary school claimed the lives of 20 children and six adults. a candlelight vigil was held all day long in newtown. 26 candles were lit monday at midnight. the volunteers spent three-hour shifts making sure those candles stayed burning. many people are turning to their faith right now to help them get through this very difficult time. >> we feel our hearts are broken in 26 little pieces, but it's the birth of jesus and we find strength in that, and so
we're mourning, but we're also thinking of god at this time, that he'll give us the strength of his son. >> police officers from neighboring communities filled in for newtown police so all of them could have the holiday off and be with their families. a newspaper outside of new york city is causing quite a controversy this morning. it published an interactive map showing the names and addresses of all handgun permit holders in new york's westchester and rockland counties. that map allows readers to zoom in on the red dots to indicate which residents are licensed to own pistols or resolve volvers. it received morning 1300 comments, mostly negative, threatening to cancel subscriptions. the paper said they did this in the wake of newtown and to focus on gun control, even though none of these people have committed any crime by owning their gun. they're just saying they want their readers to be interested in knowing about the guns in their neighborhoods. a snowboarder was killed on monday after getting caught
in an avalanche at donor ski ranch. the dog with a search team found the man who was in his 50s went missing. he was buried in three feet of snow at the base of the mountain. others say he enjoyed the mountain after moving back to the area. a step of science fiction is put to the test. a private space flight company the grasshopper lifted off, hovered and then safely touched back down on a launchpad. the company says it's almost ready for a first real liftoff for the reusable rocket. you know, megan, in the past when you see the rockets take off, the rockets you see would just break apart and never be used again. they're going to recycle them. >> it's going to change everything. pretty cool. sorry, massachusetts, it's not going to happen. >> no doubt some people are disappointed about an oscar winner, not going to be leaving your state anytime soon. we'll tell you why ben affleck says he is not running for senate. plus jessica simpson uses
twitter to make an official announcement. of course if you read the tweet, you said i already knew that. i'm meteorologist mike massco. this is our interactive radar. you can get it on the google play store and also the i-tune store. some rain and snow moving into the area. it's 33 right now and it's snowing to beat the band in the south. >>reporter: well, mike, the snow is making its way right up 95 right now. i'll let you know what traffic looks like on the beltway and 83 coming up on "good morning maryland." it's time to change the way we clean.
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war ii. his aging affirmed to people magazine the actor died of natural causes at his manhattan home. durning was 89 years old. 6:38. rumors have been swirling for weeks, but jessica simpson has remained mum about a second pregnancy until now. the new mom took to twitter to announce that baby maxwell is going to be a big sister. the weight watchers spokeswoman and her fiancee, eric johnson, had their daughter on may 1st, and they chose christmas day to announce the merry news, another bundle of joy is on the way. after days of rumors, ben affleck is finally putting the speculation of his possible run at politics to rest. the actor posted a message on facebook that he is not quitting his day job. he wrote "i love massachusetts, and our political process, but i am not running for office. " affleck grew up in massachusetts and was rumored to be considered running for senator john kerry's seat if he is confirmed as secretary of state. time now to get ready to gamble.
>> yeah. stay with us this morning. laws in maryland are changing. we'll tell you how casinos are getting ready for 24-hour action and table games. also this morning, a place in different countries, a spiritual center in times of worship, celebration and sorrow reminds us to keep 20 young children in our thoughts and prayers. it's a storm over the east coast that's affecting us today. there's a storm on the west coast that could bring snow for the weekend. details on that coming up. >>reporter: well, right now 695 is nice and clear just west of york road. i'll let you know what traffic looks like on 95 and 83 coming up on "good morning maryland."
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what a night, huh? but, um, can the test drive be over now? head back to the dealership? [ male announcer ] it's practically yours. but we still need your signature. volkswagen sign then drive is back. and it's never been easier to get a passat. that's the power of german engineering. get $0 down, $0 due at signing, $0 deposit, and $0 first month's payment on any new volkswagen. visit vwdealer.com today. good wednesday morning. this is your abc 2 news to go. i'm megan pringle. >> i'm charley crowson. we begin with a check of that forecast out there. things could be changing in a matter of hours. >> absolutely. let's send it over to meteorologist mike massco. how's it looking out there? >> cold and dry. that's the good news. but that's going to change over to the next hour or so. to the northwest, joppa33 degrees. look at maryland's most powerful radar, already starting to see some flurries move into annapolis right now,
shadyside. again, if you have reports of flurries send it to facebook and let us know. everything pushing up from south to north during the course of the morning hours. the band of steady heavy snow just south of d.c. land and that will be moving in during the course of this morning. so it's a burst of snow first, then it goes rapidly over to some rain, especially from the city on points to the south and the east. and then an ice situation over our northwestern counties. carroll, fredrick county under winter weather advisories right up until 6:00 tomorrow morning. so it's a rain/snow mixture, again, going quickly over to rain from the city right through the beltway going just into hblght right on -- howard county right on the carroll/baltimore county line. to the north and west two to three inches of snow before we turn over to rain. in the northern tier of the state, towards allegheny, garrett, washington county, could be five to as much as a foot of snow before this storm is all said and done. here's your hour-by-hour forecast, again, through the course of the morning, that burst of snow comes in. 33 goes to 35, 38 goes to 52 from 1:00 on to 4:00 with heavy, steady rains moving in.
we'll talk more about this forecast and show you maybe some more snow, lauren cook in the forecast coming up in just a little bit. >>reporter: well, mike, that snow expected to fall right around 9:00 this morning, so if you are traveling at that time, do take it slow because it's going to be pretty slick out there. we do have a crash in baltimore right on green spring avenue at cold spring lane, so watch out for that as well. if you are using the jfx to get downtown, no problems whatsoever. it will be nice and clear from the beltway to fayette street. and here's what 95 looks like downtown at the fort mchenry tunnel. no delays whatsoever. now the snow that mike was talking about, it's actually in d.c., but it's slowly creeping up 95. so definitely keep that in mind. here's what 695 looks like, traffic moving right along at baltimore national pike, no problems getting up to 795. that's a look at your abc 2 time saver traffic. megan and charley, over to you. right now things don't look bad out there on the road, but as the day goes on, it's going to be changing. expect things to get a bit messier. abc 2 news' linda stow is live
out along york road. linda, the morning commute could be in jeopardy, couldn't it? >>reporter: well, we should be good for the early part of the commute. but around 9:00 this morning, that's when the snow could start falling, so things could get a bit more slick. and as the day goes on because we'll be getting rain after that, things could be a lot messier during the afternoon and for your evening commute. it'll be similar to what we saw on christmas eve. we should be getting a little snow and then it all changing over to rain. that means for the midday rush and tonight's commute, things could get messier. windy a lot of people -- and with a lot of people heading home after christmas, this wintery mix could pose a lot of problems, especially if your travels take you through western maryland which could get up to a foot of snow and an ice storm. so, again, for those of you who have to venture out this morning, we should be okay for the morning commute. things could get a bit dicier around 9:00 this morning when the snow starts falling. after that it'll be changing to rain. so it's really the afternoon and evening commute that you should be aware of. we're live in baltimore county, linda stow, abc 2 news.
6:45 right now. cities across the south were slammed by severe winter weather on tuesday that killed three people and left others injured. several states are also reporting outages that affect more than 100,000 people. this video is from mobile, alabama where the national weather service says a tornado hit. several buildings were damaged, several accidents happened as a result of this storm. the taliban this morning is claiming responsibility for a suicide attack at a u.s. military base in afghanistan. a vehicle driven by a bomber exploded at the gate of a base in the eastern part of the country on wednesday, killing three afghans. afghan nato-led forces say the bomber did not get into the base nor breach its perimeter. new information this morning on a story first reported as breaking news last night. a deadly shooting we told you about this at 11:00. police say a tarrytown police officer shot a man on commerce street around 8:30 last night. officers received a call about edward becker, jr. smashing the
windows of his father's truck using a hammer. when they arrived op the scene, they asked him to drop that hammer and when he didn't, they say he came within an arm's length of an officer and that's when the officer fired. the officer says he was in fear for his life. he's on leave right now pending the outcome of a routine investigation. baltimore county now where police say a man is dead after a man tried to break into a store in glen burnie. police say that byron philip broke into the store and got into a fight with someone and that's when the employee shot philip. the store employee who shot the man, he is now cooperating with the investigation. his name has not been released and no charges have been filed. 6:47 right now. christmas vacation is cut short for president obama. he plans to leave hawaii this evening to return to washington d.c. tomorrow to work on the fiscal cliff deal before the year ends. house and senate members are expected to reconvene. without an agreement, automatic tax increases for everyone and deep spending cuts will be triggered by the new year. the main dispute continues to
be over taxes. if you want to play the slots at 2:00 in the morning, starting tomorrow you can. maryland live casino is set to kick off its first 24-hour gaming day. once the casino opens at 8:00 in the morning, it will be open around the clock. maryland live is also prepared to immediately begin making the modifications required to add table games to the floor as soon as the regulation office makes it official. a new 1200-seat auditorium is set to open in ocean city in 2014. it's going to be located at the ronald e. powell convention center. construction is set to begin in the fall on the $14 million project. well, some netflix customers not too happy. they wanted to curl up on the couch and watch a movie on christmas eve. they were just out of luck. the streaming service for video was out for a good chunk of the day on christmas eve. on its twitter page, netflix blamed amazon's clout and their infrastructure for that problem. netflix apologize inside that tweet, calling it terrible timing. they're back to normal now with
streaming levels and they thank their customers for their patience. the youngest victims of the sandy hook elementary school shooting were remembered on christmas day in the nation's capital. 20 child-like angels were placed at the altar inside the children's chapel at washington national cathedral. the angels are made of paper doyles and each represent each of the children killed in newtown, connecticut. the head of the cathedral's altar guild say those angels were made in loving memory of the children that were lost so tragically. the sandy hook angels will be on display until january 6th. time now for five things to know on wednesday morning. china opens the world's longest high speed rail line today. trains at high speed lines have initially 86 miles an hour with a total travel time of 800 miles an hour. the fastest time on record was 200 miles an hour. the rush is on after a disappointing holiday shopping season. retailers are hoping to entice shoppers with after christmas day sales. this is typically one of the busiest shopping days of the
year. today is the first celebration of the kwanzaa celebration. it was started by the chairman of the black steud at cal state university's long beach. the holiday ends on january 1st. the day after christmas and persuasive -- and places like the canada and the united kingdom it's boxing day. traditionally this is the day that service workers would receive gifts from their employers. in the 1980s the holiday turned into a shopping day that resembled black friday in the united states. president barack obama had a pretty good 2012. he won reelection and then saw his signature healthcare law upheld in the u.s. supreme court. now readers of cnn.com have named the president cnn's most intriguing person of 2012. he was also named time magazine's person of the year. the ravens, they're heading to the playoffs and now you can get your hands on some tickets but there aren't very many to go around. ravensravens and the wildcard playoff tickets go on sale this friday morning at 10:00 in the morning. don't bother lining up at the bank to get your hands on these. they're only available through
ticket master. so you gotta go online or call or find a ticket master outlet. the ravens will play here at home either saturday january the 5th or sunday the 6th. we do know the ravens will be playing the bengals. that's coming up sunday at 1:00 in cincinnati. take a look at this video that was captured by someone in louisiana showing a water spout forming over the lake. new orleans tv station wtfu, they report that the water spout crossed the causeway, stopping traffic. no damage was reported. much of the southern united states under severe weather and tornado watches christmas evening. time now for a check on our weather because you said this storm could be coming our way, mike? >> it's going to be here. we're just getting kind of the outer fringes of it, that severe weather, stays down to the south. taking a look outside towards the key bridge, dundalk, cloudy, 33 degrees, 73% humidity. dewpoints still dry at 25 and we are awaiting some snow over our southern zones pushing into the city. so while we're at 37 in the city, you go outside the beltway, eldersburg at 30,
elkton, good morning to you, you're at 32 degrees. annapolis to the south, all of southern anne arundel county, down towards p.g. county, you're dealing with some slight snow and flurries. d.c. land right now seeing a good burst of snow. that's where i do think we'll see our burst of snow coming in during the course of the morning hours. again, everything sliding from south to north. in a few hours this band running right along 95 and it will be in the city limits towards the tail end of your morning commute. winter weather advisories toward the north. again, expecting snow to rain just about a dusting to an inch of snow, and this is, again, from the city on points towards the north right on the carroll/baltimore county line and then it's snow to ice to rain. could see a snow accumulation of two to three inches before that changeover. beyond that, from thermont out towards hagerstown, well to the north and west, it's a snow and ice storm. five to 12 inches of snow and along the eastern slopes of the appalachian mountains could pick up a foot or better. rain is going to be a big problem from the city on toward points south and east.
one to two inches of rain in the bucket before this storm is all said and done. over southern maryland, could see some severe weather during the course of the afternoon. so we are going to get it all from this system. here it is now over the tennessee valley, sliding toward the north. you go to the west coast, they're getting pounded right now, from sacramento up towards seattle and that is a storm, believe it or not we have to watch here going into the weekend. we do know an area of low pressure will form off of hatteras. the question is does it come up the coast or does it stay offshore? i'm leaning at towards maybe a snow event over the weekend. stay tuned to channel 2, we'll fine tune the forecast closer to the weekend. 40 is your guarantee today. heavy rain, wintery mix to the north. again, a raging snowstorm over western maryland. thursday morning maybe a shot shower, otherwise drying out, we're at 43 degrees. then it's a blend of sunshine and clouds on friday. 42 degrees. watch what happens as we go into the weekend. on saturday that storm will start to mature and it will start to move towards the north. do i think we see some snows starting to move into the area and it certainly will be cold
enough to snow if we get that track closer to the coast. 40 on sunday and into the 40s as we go into monday and tuesday. we'll talk more about weather inside "good morning america." we're going to send it on to lauren with a check on traffic. hello, lauren. >>reporter: hi, mike. we'll be dealing with snow, rain, even isolater on this morning. even though there aren't tremendous accumulations expected, it's going to cause a big mess out on the roads. so definitely take it slow. right now on 695, we are dealing with a medical emergency in dundalk. it's right on the outer loop at the key bridge. no specifics as of yet, but we will bring you the very latest as it does become available. no delays right now traveling through the tunnels. and here's what 95 looks like just north of 195, as mike mentioned, the snow starting to make its way from d.c., moving right up 95. so definitely be careful if you are heading to washington this morning. here's what 83 looks like up in hunt valley. everything moving right along. no problems from scwhann road down to the beltway. that's a look at your abc 2 news time saver traffic. megan and charley, over to you.
>> thanks, lauren. first lady michelle obama recently read "it was the night before christmas" to the patients at the medical center in washington. a creature was stirring, namely the obama family dog bo. the dog jumped on a lap and made himself right at home. the white house says visiting patients at the children's hospital, it is the first lady's holiday tradition dating back to the 1950s. >> it does not matter the size, all dogs think they are lap dogs. >> all dogs are lap dogs. a puppy named john almost never got to be home with his family. >> thanks to the power of social media, he got there just in time for christmas. the adoption papers at the oregon humane society were signed and the belzer family, they were ready to take their puppy home. when the staff went to go get him, he was gone. he'd been stolen. the humane society put out a plea for help. >> folks in oregon care deeply about pets, and the social media pressure was outstanding. so i think when they realized
they had a hot puppy so to speak, they were eager to return him to the shelter. >> we brought him in and our eyes just lit up and we were just really happy. >> the belzer family says john is their best christmas present. so far no arrests, though, have been made for the person, the grinch who made off with that dog. >> yes, but they had a change of heart which is nice. i'm glad that they turned it around. >> he realized he had a hot dog. i mean, people are looking for this animal. >> what kind of dog was that? i've been saying all morning, what is it? is it like a box terrier. >> some sort of chihuahua terrier mix. i think when all else fails they say it's a terrier mix. >> that little dog could be a little boyfriend for my sophie. >> real quickly on the weather today, that's going to affect us throughout the day. you got it covered both here and at abc2news.com and the commute could be a real problem as the day goes along. >>reporter: yes, as the morning does progress, mike, snow on the way? >> we'll be here throughout the course of the morning. see you in 30 minutes.